Frequent Questions

Are polymers in pellet form exempt from the definition of hazardous chemical?

If polymers are in pellet form and require material safety data sheets, are they exempt from the definition of hazardous chemical under Section 311(e)(2)?

Section 311(e)(2) exemption from the definition of hazardous chemical applies to "[a] ny substance present as a solid in any manufactured item to the extent exposure to the substance does not occur under normal conditions of use." Polymers in pellet form are manufactured items in a solid state and would not normally be a source of any hazardous chemical exposure, therefore the polymers in pellet form are normally exempt (October 15, 1987, 52 FR 38344). Altering the solid state of the pellets (e.g., as part of a manufacturing process) creates a potential for exposure and would cause the polymers to become subject to the hazardous chemical threshold determinations (40 CFR Section 370.10). During this alteration, if the amount of fume or dust released is at or above 10,000 pounds, then the pellets are reportable under sections 311 and 312 (See Guidance published on July 13, 2010 (75 FR 39852)).

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